Defiant El-Rufai accuses PDP-led government of plans to rig forthcoming elections, says he can’t be silenced

Rivers governor, Rotimi Amaechi, Nasir El-Rufai and Chris Ngige before travelling to SSS office in Abuja.

Mr. El- Rufai was detained by the SSS for what the latter described as inciting remarks.

A former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nasir El-Rufai, in spite of his recent detention by the State Security Service, SSS, has accused the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP-led Federal Government of plans to rig the 2015 elections.

“They have definite plans to rig the elections in Ekiti & Osun in 2014, & the entire nation in 2015. We will not be intimidated into silence!” Mr. El-Rufai said via his twitter handle on Tuesday.

“They intend to rig”, Mr. El-Rufai insisted on twitter, when he was asked by one of his twitter followers – “why hold presidential election on Valentine’s day? Are they so desperate for apathy from youths?”

The SSS released Mr. El-Rufai at 12.35 a.m. on Tuesday after he voluntarily walked into the agency’s headquarters at about 9 a.m. on Monday.

“Mallam Nasir El-Rufai left the SSS premises at 12.35 a.m. today after more than 15 hours,” the former minister’s media adviser, Muyiwa Adekeye, tweeted at 12.40 a.m. on Tuesday morning.

The politician, one of the most vociferous critics of the Goodluck Jonathan administration, went underground on Friday after the SSS launched a manhunt for him for failing to honour an invitation from the agency in connection with his remarks about an impending violence if the 2015 elections are not credible.

The former minister had initially declined the invitation citing his pending suit against the SSS over his detention in a hotel in Awka during the Anambra State governorship election last November 16.

Three days later, Mr. El-Rufai voluntarily surrendered himself to the SSS. He was accompanied by the Rivers State governor, Chibuike Amaechi, and a serving senator, Chris Ngige.

Mr. Amaechi, who was also allowed access into the SSS office, later left at about 12 noon, while Mr. Ngige left two hours later.

The SSS said the former minister’s comment about possible violence in the coming elections was “provocative” and warned that those making inflammatory remarks might be prosecuted.

Mr. El-Rufai, however, denied any wrongdoing, saying his position was only based on Nigeria’s electoral history.

The ex-minister’s political party, the All Progressives Congress, APC, condemned the SSS for haunting its deputy national secretary, saying the comments attributed to the former minister were not inciting in any way.

Mr. El-Rufai himself has consistently said he would resist ploys by the SSS to silence him.

“Mallam El-Rufai will not be silenced,” the former minister had said through Mr. Adekeye, Friday.

“He will continue to do his patriotic duty of challenging INEC and the security agencies to guarantee the climate for free and fair elections in Nigeria by desisting from partisanship and the embrace of impunity.”


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